Funeral in Berlin was the second of three films based on the Harry Palmer novels by Len Deighton. As he did in The Ipcress File, Michael Caine stars as Palmer, Deighton's bespectacled, somewhat disreputable British secret agent. In the manner of Graham Greene's The Third Man, Palmer is dispatched to Berlin to look into the highly suspicious defection of Soviet colonel Stok (Oscar Homolka). It is giving nothing away to reveal that Stok's death is a sham, and that Palmer is expected to engineer the "corpse"'s defection. To reveal any more, however, would be giving the game away. Michael Caine would portray Harry Palmer a third time in Billion Dollar Brain.